Category: BeFriending Creation

QEW’s quarterly newsletter

  • Sign of Menominee Nation

    Flows Repeatedly: Learnings from the Menominee Nation

    By Tom Small. NAPANOH PEMECWAN—Menominee for “flows repeatedly.” In nature, there is no foreground or background, no hierarchy, only relations, patterns of change and repetition. Train yourself to see the repeated patterns, to understand, feel, and identify with the flow. With these two Menominee words and their implications, Jeff Grignon,…

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  • Photo of root with hand

    Listening to Roots, Walking in Beauty

    By Mey Hasbrook. IN THE MEADOW, I gave thanks beside a beech tree. Sunset neared after a beautiful day with Swarthmoor Area Meeting of Southwest Cumbria, England. This area is called “the cradle of Quakerism” and brings to mind The Valiant 60, the 17th-century law-breaking mystics and traveling ministers from…

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  • Beckoned by Living Trees

    By Marcelle Martin THE  FIRST  TREE  that beckoned me silently, long ago, was a sapling on the far side of a lawn. When I investigated, I discovered it was being strangled by an orange plastic band encircling its trunk. After the sapling had been purchased from a local nursery, the…

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  • Seven people stand in soil

    Cultivating the Next Generation of Naturalists

    Fayetteville Arkansas Quakers Create Native Plant Garden for Ozark Natural Science Center By Eric Fuselier. The Fayetteville Monthly Meeting recently planted a native plant garden at the Ozark Natural Science Center (ONSC) located south of Eureka Springs, Arkansas. This native plant garden was a gift to ONSC, which is a…

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  • Emma Condori from Bolivia, Barb Adams from Richmond VA and Hayley Hathaway IMYM

    “We Had Something, Now We Don’t.” Bolivian Friends Face the Climate Crisis

    By Emma Condori Mamani. My name is Emma Condori. I am from Bolivia. I was born near Lake Titicaca. Most of my childhood was very beautiful because I was raised in community life in one of the indigenous communities we have in Bolivia, called Aymara. One thing I really appreciated…

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  • Three people stand in front of light pink house with porch

    Casa Pueblo: Truly the People’s House

    By Liz Robinson. THIS STORY STARTS with Hurricane Maria and our Central Philadelphia Monthly Meeting’s decision to select Casa Pueblo as the beneficiary for our 12th month charitable giving. Because of its outstanding reputation, and its amazing hurricane-disaster recovery work providing solar energy to restore power to vital community services…

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  • QEW Poetry and Prayer

    The Call and Response

    By Mey Hasbrook. THIS SUMMER at the Friends General Conference Gathering’s Earthcare Center, I spoke on  “Transformative Earthcare: 18th-century Benjamin Lay for Today.” I shared how this third-generation Quaker lived a radical life at the intersections of concerns that continue to weigh upon us today. In the 2017 biography The…

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  • Aerial image of fire and smoke

    When Climate Change Gets Personal

    By Gayle Matson FOR 60 OF MY 65 YEARS I lived in Seattle and Portland, surrounded by snow-capped mountains and lush forests. The natural beauty of the Pacific Northwest is truly spectacular, though climate change has brought even rainier winters to the area. Last year, after pining for sunnier weather…

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  • School’s Out

    Shelley Tanenbaum This past June was the hottest June on record, ever. This July was the hottest month ever recorded. Earlier this summer, temperatures were so high in France that exams were cancelled. You might not realize how significant this is, so let me put it in perspective by telling…

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  • Green sweat bee on New England aster. Photo by Dave Crawford

    How to Help Pollinators in Your Own Neighborhood

    By Dave Crawford. Robin Wall Kimmerer (Braiding Sweetgrass, 2014) suggests humans can restore natural landscapes as a gift to Earth in exchange for the gifts nature provides to humans. She suggests that Earth might say “thank you” to humans for doing this.  I’ve done this in my yard, and Earth…

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  • Super moon over San Francisco bay

    An Easter Reflection with Joanna Macy

    By Sara Jolena Wolcott. “What do you envision for the future?” Joanna Macy—Buddhist eco-philosopher, scholar of deep ecology and systems theory—asked me last night, over a dinner of orange yams and tofu and lemon broccoli. Every time I visit her in her Berkeley home, she feeds me these bright orange…

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  • Image: Councilman Derek Green (right),a public banking advocate, addresses local lobbyists at Philadelphia City Hall on Lobby Day (Rita in blue and Pamela in teal). Photo: Stanley Shapiro.

    Public Banking, Divine Vocations, and Fertile Ground

    By Pamela Haines. THE ECO-JUSTICE Collaborative (EJC) of Philadelphia Yearly Meeting has endorsed an effort in Philadelphia to create a public bank. Similar to credit unions for individuals, a public bank would hold public funds in the city to be directed toward local needs, rather than paying for big banks to…

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  • Climate A New Story

    A Story of Interbeing: A Book Review of Climate: A New Story By Charles Eisenstein

    By Ruah Swennerfelt. I’VE JUST FINISHED reading Climate: A New Story by Charles Eisenstein and am so moved by the wisdom I found between the covers. Eisenstein critiques the climate movement, arguing that the reliance on numbers, such as 350, facts, and data will not bring about the changes that are needed…

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  • Southern Appalachian Quaker Youth Respond to Climate Crisis

    By Robert McGahey. ARTHUR MORGAN SCHOOL and Celo Monthly Meeting recently hosted  Southern Appalachian Young Friends (SAYF) for their annual retreat here. The Quaker Earthcare Witness Outreach Committee contacted the organizers to share about our work, leading an afternoon session with the youth. After a rigorous hike to idyllic Strawberry…

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  • Feeding Us with Love and Local Tradition

    By Bonnie Peace Watkins AS THE TWIN CITIES Friends Meeting Fellowship Committee, we were excited about the Quaker Earthcare Witness  Spring  Steering Committee meeting  here  in mid-April.  We have long felt that food and fellowship are vital parts of witnessing, sharing, and caring for our beautiful planet. As we prepared…

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  • Shelley Tanenbaum at FWCC in 2019

    Awaking Across the Branches of Friends

    By Shelley Tanenbaum. SOMETHING SPECIAL happened at the March 2019 Friends World Committee on Consultation Section of the Americas meeting. Friends from across the branches of the Religious Society of Friends came together to express our love for the land and our dedication to environmental justice, with each of us…

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  • Group Shot at Inauguration

    Quaker Teachers Take on Climate Change and Restore Mexican Cloud Forest

    By Paula Kline. Alan Wright and Paula Kline first took students to the Mexican Cloud Forest in 2003. Teachers at Westtown School in southeastern Pennsylvania, the couple had initiated the Quaker school’s agriculture program for its bi-centennial in 1999. Inspired by the ground breaking work of John Jeavons’ approach to…

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  • So You’re Ready to Take Action Against Climate Change

    Josephine Ferorelli created this flow chart—a helpful resource for anyone who doesn’t know where to start. Josephine is the co-founder and co-director of Conceivable Future, a women-led network bringing awareness to the threat climate change poses to reproductive justice, and demanding an end to US fossil fuel subsidies. Click…

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  • The Changing Context of United Nations Climate Negotiations

    By Philip Emmi. It is increasingly clear that we have gotten off on the wrong foot when addressing climate change. It can not be primarily a matter of nation-state cooperation on international policy, as once thought. Rather, addressing climate change requires a multi-pronged approach including attention to climate science, finance,…

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  • The Bare Minimum: COP Climate Change Conference

    By Lindsey Fielder Cook. THE AIM OF THE DECEMBER climate change conference in Poland, known as the Conference of Parties 24 (or COP24), was to define an implementation ‘Rulebook’ for the Paris Agreement.  After two weeks of exhausting, if not ‘fierce’ negotiations, how did it all go? It depends on…

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  • Pachamama Logo

    Pachamama Alliance Promotes Grassroots Drawdown Action

    By Keith Voos. I’M SURE THAT MOST readers of this newsletter hold it to be true that the human race now faces the biggest threat to its survival since its near extinction in the last ice age, when the population of the earth was reduced to between 15,000 and 18,…

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  • Pachamana Drawdown Workshop

    Project Drawdown In Practice

    By Ruth Darlington. WHEN PAUL HAWKEN’S book Drawdown: The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse Global Warming came out in 2017, many hailed it as the “new Green Bible.” I rushed to get a copy. When I held it in my hands, it felt like proof that there really was something…

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  • Little newt in two hands

    Let Nature Teach

    By Dan Kriesberg. AN EXCELLENT MEASURE of how much children are learning is to count the number of times the teacher says “Pay attention.” The fewer “pay attentions” the more learning. In my own experience of 30 years as a science teacher, a 4th-grade teacher, and even as a swim…

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  • Climate Disobedience Center Logo

    Finding Peace in Troubled Times

    By Jay O’Hara. ON CHRISTMAS EVE I went out with my in-laws to church service in upstate New York. The big crowd gathered in the chapel on the campus of Cornell University, and the minister hit all the right notes for this presumably liberal crowd: alluding to the occupant of…

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  • COP24 Image

    Changing Together? The COP24

    By Frank Granshaw and Annette Carter. IN DECEMBER 2018 the 24th meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention for Climate Change (COP24) met in Katowice, Poland. Their task was to hammer out the rulebook by which the world could achieve the goals set forth…

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  • Kallan Benson sits on her butterfly parachute

    A Quaker Youth’s Journey in Climate Activism

    By Kallan Benson. AS A 15-YEAR OLD QUAKER, I am accustomed to silence. I understand it is not empty; it can hold profound power. I have felt my spirit resonate in the silence of my Quaker community, but silence has recently taken me outside the meetinghouse to the steps of…

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  • Energy Choices Front Cover

    Going Green is Easy and Cheaper Now

    A Peek into Quaker Institute for the Future’s new book Energy Choices: Opportunities to Make Wise Decisions for a Sustainable Future by Bob Bruninga Review by Judy Lumb. WE ARE NEVER MORE than a few years away from making a major personal energy decision: • when we pay our electricity bill •…

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  • Global Cimate Action Summit Logo

    Report from the Global Climate Action Summit

    By Larry Strain. I attended the Global Climate Action Summit (GCAS) in San Francisco this September as a delegate of the American Institute of Architects (AIA). I also attended two affiliated events – The Carbon Smart Building Day and Climate Heritage Mobilization. I’ve been working on reducing Green House Gas…

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  • A few people walking ona very straight, flat highway

    First Nation – Farmer Climate Unity March

    An Introduction By Jeff Kisling. Iowa Yearly Meeting (Conservative) Friends Peter Clay and I recently walked on the First Nation-Farmer Climate Unity March. A group of about thirty that included nearly a dozen Native Americans walked 94 miles along the route of the Dakota Access Pipeline from September 1 –…

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  • Birds, Bees, and Butterflies: Monthly Meeting in Fayetteville, Arkansas Creates New Habitat for Wildlife

    By Eric Fuselier. LAST YEAR FAYETTEVILLE Monthly Meeting’s Quaker Earthcare Witness Committee started a project to improve the grounds at our meetinghouse, the OMNI Center for Peace, Justice & Ecology, to include more habitat for wildlife, with the ultimate goal of the Center becoming certified as a wildlife habitat by…

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  • Group of people hawl log

    A Fight for The Yintah

    By Daniel Kirkpatrick. THE THIRTY OF US STOOD in a quiet circle in the gravel on a sunny, cool morning. Wood smoke rose toward the sky from the adjacent lodge, and boreal forests surrounded the clearing. A First Nations elder, Lht’at’en, spoke in her Wet’suwet’en dialect, offering a prayer before…

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  • QEW Poetry and Prayer

    A Simple Freedom or Was it Just a Dream?

    By Avotcja Jiltonilro Once upon a time when the world was green When this Earth was heaven The trees used to sing to us & we sang their praises Danced in honor of their beauty And reveled in the millions of gifts they gave us…

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  • A red circle that says "Sacred" painted on the ground with a group of people in the background in San Francisco

    Seeking Grace: Reflections from the Rise Up for Climate, Jobs & Justice Mobilization

    By Shelley Tanenbaum. WE CAN’T FULLY ADDRESS A TRANSITION from fossil fuels to renewables without limiting fossil fuel extraction. That is the message delivered in countless street actions (including 30,000 people during an art-inspired march on a perfect California day) and unofficial workshops held throughout the Bay Area, first as…

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  • Photo of speaker at Global Climate Action Summit

    The Global Climate Action Summit From the Row behind the VIP Section

    By Mica Estrada. “OUR PLANET IS NOT for sale! Our air and water are not for sale! Our land is not for sale!”  This chant rose from the audience as Michael Bloomberg took the stage at the Global Climate Action Summit (GCAS) held in San Francisco, September 13 & 14,…

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  • Jenny Chapman stands in protest alongside five other people

    Stewardship is a Likely Place to Start: Mountain Valley Pipeline Resistance

    By Jenny Chapman Jenny Chapman, a birthright Quaker whose ancestors made the pilgrimage to America with William Penn, lives on a farm on Bent Mountain in rural southwest Virginia and is a member of Roanoke Friends Meeting. She and her husband raised their two sons on the Mountain and now…

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  • Cover of Out of the Wreckage

    Book Review: A New Politics for an Age of Crisis

    By Shelley Tanenbaum. GREAT MINDS AND SAVVY organizers repeatedly stress that we need to articulate a vision if we hope to build a successful movement for political and cultural change, yet rarely do those great minds articulate a vision themselves. I am happy to lift up George Monbiot’s latest book, Out…

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  • Photo of people during a protest, a man holding a sign that says "Power Local Green Jobs"

    Love & Political Power

    By Bruce Birchard I WANT TO LIFT UP  two sentences from Martin Luther King’s 1967 address to the Southern Christian Leadership Conference about the relationship between love and power: “What is needed is a realization that power without love is reckless and abusive, and love without power is sentimental and…

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  • Banner that says divest

    Divestment for Social Change

    By Kent Walton. HONORING THE ANCIENT adage to “put your money where your mouth is,” Roanoke Friends in Virginia organized a meeting after worship to inform members about divesting from fossil fuel companies. Presented by the Meeting’s Peace and Social Justice Committee, Roanoke Friend and financial advisor Tom Nasta…

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  • Changing Corporations for the Better: Shareholder Engagement

    By Kate Monahan. CORPORATIONS ARE PART of our daily lives. When it comes to halting climate change, we need the meaningful participation of corporations. As Shareholder Engagement Associate at Friends Fiduciary, I’ve seen significant, concrete change come from a company modifying a practice or policy as a result of engagement…

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  • QEW Logo

    To Address Climate Disruption, Start Here.

    Concrete Steps from Quaker Earthcare Witness’ Sustainability, Faith & Action Working Group Many of these suggestions are based on the work of Paul Hawken and his team of scientists in their book DRAWDOWN and their website, www.drawdown.org. ENERGY Individual/Meeting:  Install solar panels; buy 100% clean and renewable electricity wherever…

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  • Whittier Friends' new garden

    Mini-Grants at Work 2018

    QUAKER EARTHCARE WITNESS offers grants to Friends’ organizations who want to enhance their physical/spiritual relationship with the Earth. We offer matching grants of up to $500 and you can apply anytime. We support projects which: Improve your immediate environment Involve, inform, and educate May reduce carbon footprints Create opportunities to…

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  • Meeting for Mourning: New England Friends Worship at Power Plant

    By Hayley Hathaway. ON SATURDAY, JULY 28, 2018 I joined about 30 Friends from five New England states at the gates of the recently opened Salem Harbor Station, a natural gas (methane) power plant on the coast of Massachusetts. We gathered for a Meeting for Worship for the purpose of…

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  • Example of Flyer for Sustainable movie screening

    Building a Community for Change: Hosting A Movie Night

    By Ruth Darlington. WHAT DO YOU DO when you are led to reach out about climate change, but you don’t know who else in your community cares about it? Last September, Medford Meeting in New Jersey co-hosted an all-day climate change film festival with the Pinelands Preservation Alliance, a local…

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  • Hands working at computer laptop

    Congress, Climate, & the Desktop Lobbyist

    By Bob Schultz. THE U.S. CONGRESS MAY BE one of the most foot-dragging institutions on the planet with respect to addressing climate disruption, yet we can find some hope in the emergence of the House Climate Solutions Caucus, a bipartisan group of U.S. Representatives that meets regularly to advance climate…

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  • A NSNP Youth Saves Seed from Cilantro Plants

    Praying on Seeds: Solidarity for Puerto Rican Sovereignty

    By Marian Dalke. SUNDAY MORNING’s soft light casts through deep wooden windows. The light shifts and picks up the soft cotton of milkweed seeds, sailing over the heads of those gathered for Quaker Meeting for Worship at Central Philadelphia Monthly Meeting. Grace Gonglewski shares a message about “praying on seeds,”…

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  • Photo of sticks in water

    The Small Water Cycle & Global Warming

    By Christopher Haines. WHEN JIMMY CARTER ASKED scientist Charles Keeling for advice in 1978 on what the government should do about climate change, Keeling said that the problem was far too complicated for people to understand, so focus on greenhouse emissions. Since then, reducing greenhouse emissions has been the principal…

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  • Photograph of Nathan Baring

    Let the Youth Be Heard: Making the Courts Confront the Climate Crisis

    By Shelley Tanenbaum. YOUNG PEOPLE, who are facing a disturbing future due to increasing climate catastrophes, can often feel like their voices are not heard. Lacking power, influence, and even the right to vote, some youth have turned to the courts. In 2015, 21 youth plaintiffs plus Dr. James Hansen…

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  • Citizens Climate Lobby Logo

    Rapid City Friends Ask Your Meeting to Send a Letter to Congress

    By Rapid City Friends and Rapid City chapter of Citizens’ Climate Lobby Rapid City Friends, an unaffiliated worship group in Rapid City, South Dakota, in conjunction with the local chapter of Citizens’ Climate Lobby, has taken action as a community:  As Quakers, we are called to work for the peaceable…

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  • Shelley giving a mock presentation about QEW to Yearly Meeting Representatives

    Engaging in Earthcare at Yearly Meetings

    DO YOU KNOW who is your Yearly Meeting representative to Quaker Earthcare Witness? DO YOU KNOW who is your Yearly Meeting representative to Quaker Earthcare Witness? Our 31 Yearly Meeting Representatives serve as liaisons between QEW and their Yearly Meetings, sharing information about what is on the hearts and minds…

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  • Text of Drawdown book on cloudy sky

    Book Review: The New Green Activist Bible?

    Review Catherine de Neergaard In DRAWDOWN: The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse Global Warming, Paul Hawken and his team of scientists have identified the 100 most effective actions to reduce the amount of carbon in the atmosphere. They define “drawdown” as “… that point in time when the concentration…

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  • Yellow signs on foloor that say Support, Transform to Put Climate in the Budget. It's urgent

    Toronto Meeting Hosts ClimateFast Initiative

    By Lyn Adamson TORONTO MONTHLY MEETING’S Peace and Social Action Committee has supported the work of ClimateFast, a Canadian climate action group, since its inception in 2012. For the first three years, ClimateFast focused on federal climate action with periods of fasting, a vigil on Parliament Hill, and a pledge…

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  • Beverly Ward Collecting Tidewater Sample

    Rising Together: Community Health Mapping in South Florida

    By Beverly G. Ward MANY COMMUNITIES in South Florida experience “sunny day” flooding during periods of very high or “king” tides. During a new or full moon, when the sun and the moon are aligned with Earth in their orbits, the gravitational pull on the oceans is at its strongest,…

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  • Group of people writing no leaves under a light

    Adding Leaves to the Grove of Life

    By Regula and Michael Russelle. AN ALL-NIGHT, OUTDOOR EVENT. One thousand passersby publicly claim their practices and promises to reduce climate change. Each attaches a paper leaf with a personal, hand-written testimony like “bicycle everywhere,” “no food waste,” “share housing,” “travel by train” to a branch on a small grove…

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  • Pink sunset clouds above mountains

    Sweet Balance with Earth

    By Ann Marie Klaus. I have to admit, I do not harbor a wish to save Earth or reverse the process she is undergoing. Nor do I worry for her. Earth, in my mind, is a powerful, exquisite being, undergoing the same process of expansion that every bit of the…

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  • Sign with building behind it

    Peace, Justice and Ecology in Arkansas

    By Eric Fuselier. Friends, we are happy to announce that we recently formed a Quaker Earthcare Committee within the monthly meeting in Fayetteville, Arkansas. Members of the committee have a lot of passion and knowledge about the environment and we’re really excited about the projects we have going on here.

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  • Alan Wright in Veracruz

    Spiritual Ecology Center Opens in Mexican Cloud Forest

    By Paula Kline. For more than a decade, my husband and I have hosted high school students for an annual Environmental Leadership Workcamp in the cloud forest of Veracruz, Mexico. A project of Westtown School’s Quaker Leadership Program, students return home transformed by their hands-on experiences with sustainable agriculture, living…

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  • QEW Logo

    40 Quakers With 30 Agendas

    By Tom Small. “FORTY QUAKERS WITH 30 different agendas.” That’s how I characterized—only half-jokingly—the Quaker Earthcare Witness Steering Committee when I was its Clerk from 1996 to 1998. The Friends Committee on Unity with Nature—that’s what we called ourselves back then. So where was the Unity in all those differences?…

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  • The Gift That Keeps on Giving: Updates at Catoctin Quaker Camp

    By Liz Hofmeister. ON SEPTEMBER 30TH, former campers, counselors, and others long associated with Baltimore Yearly Meeting’s Catoctin Quaker Camp marked the 60th anniversary of the residential summer camp located some 50 miles west of Baltimore, MD. A highlight of the weekend celebration was the dedication of the camp’s new…

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  • Population: A Controversial Witness

    By Stan Becker. FRIENDS COMMITTEE on Unity with Nature (FCUN) was born in 1987 at the Friends General Conference gathering plenary. There, Marshall Massey outlined all the environmental threats we faced on planet earth. Except he missed one. He did not mention the rapid growth in numbers of our own…

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  • United With Nature: A Historic Reflection on QEW

    By Judy Lumb. In 1987, I was sick in Belize, an isolated Friend. My Meeting for Worship was reading Friends Journal in my hammock. I learned to keep pen and paper handy because my version of speaking in Meeting was to write letters. When the notice of the creation of Friends Committee…

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  • Legislating Light with FCNL

    By Scott Greenler and Emily Wirzba. AT THE FRIENDS COMMITTEE on National Legislation (FCNL), the Quaker testimony of stewardship underpins our climate work. We see human actions inflicting harm to the earth, and as caretakers, or stewards, we are compelled to act. We watch with deep pain as the president…

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  • Sacramento Capitol

    Green in Sacramento

    By Shelley Tanenbaum. I TOOK A DAY OFF from QEW work to join ‘Green Lobby Day’ in my state capital, Sacramento. I highly recommend that you do the same in your state. As much as we want to see strong national legislation, significant government action, at least in the near…

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  • US coins falling out of clear jar on white background

    Money & Soul: Bringing Our Faith Values to the Economy

    By Pamela Haines. TO THEOLOGIAN WALTER WINK, Spirit is at the core of every institution. These institutions, or Powers, are created with the sole purpose of serving the general welfare of people, and when they cease to do so, their spirituality becomes diseased. The task of the church is to…

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  • Potential Surprises

    By Shelley Tanenbaum. A LARGE GULF EXISTS between those who understand the magnitude of the environmental crisis we are facing and those who, willfully or not, remain unaware and disengaged. Just look around your community or your meetinghouse. Most people are not necessarily climate deniers or uncaring about the environment.

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  • Clean Jobs Act Protest

    Organizing for Community and Climate

    By Jaime DeMarco. I RECENTLY HELPED CO-FOUND the Maryland Clean Energy Jobs Initiative, a new non-profit working to pass legislation in Maryland that will do three things. It will expand renewable electricity in Maryland to 50% by 2030, invest in renewable energy companies owned by women and people…

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  • Climate Pilgrimage

    Rooted in Reverence: Reflections on the Climate Pilgrimage

    By Honor Woodrow. I AM WRITING TO SHARE a reflection on my experience of the recent Climate Pilgrimage, where Friends from New England and fellow travelers spent six days walking the 60 miles from the Schiller Station (which burns both coal and wood) in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, to the Merrimack…

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  • QEW Poetry and Prayer

    May We Rise up From the Earth

    By Julia Bixler Isaacs. May we be grounded with the strength of the earth, May our love for the planet burn bright like fire, May visions of wholeness rise up on wings of air, May our actions flow with the ease of water, And may the dance…

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  • Quaker House

    Ecological Living at Quaker Retirement Community

    By Elizabeth Boardman. PERHAPS, IF WE HAD ASKED THEM, our grandchildren could have told us before we came here to Friends House what benefits we would accrue by moving out of the big family home to a small apartment.  And now we could tell them the advantages of a communal…

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  • Photo of Cynthia Barnettt

    Environmental Author Cynthia Barnett Talks to QEW

    Cynthia Barnett, the author of three books focused on water: Rain: A Natural and Cultural History, Blue Revolution: Unmaking America’s Water Crisis, and Mirage: Florida and the Vanishing Water of the Eastern U.S., shares her insight on climate and water with QEW Publications Coordinator Hayley Hathaway. You now have written…

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  • Denali National Park and Preserve, United States

    Juneau’s Journey Toward Renewable Energy

    By Margo Waring. JUNEAU, ALASKA COULD BE A MODEL for cities across the nation.  A new non-profit called Renewable Juneau is trying to make this happen. Our mission is to “Promote local, renewable energy to create a healthy, prosperous, and low-carbon future for Juneau.” We decided to keep our focus…

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  • Quakers At Interfaith Sit-In on Statehouse Steps in Annapolis

    Friends Help Ban Fracking in Maryland

    By Karie Firoozmand. ON APRIL 4, Maryland’s Governor Larry Hogan signed legislation prohibiting fracking in the state. This is a huge success for the individuals and organizations that have been working together for this goal for several years, as well as a precedent for other states. I have been working…

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  • Photo of Standing Rock encampment by Shelley Tanenbaum

    A Call for More Radical Witness

    By Tom Small. “THERE’S A CALL, from both within and beyond FCUN, for a more radical witness.” That’s the first sentence of an article I wrote twenty years ago for BeFriending Creation. What was true for the Friends Committee on Unity with Nature in 1996 holds true again for the…

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  • QEW Poetry and Prayer

    Earth Prayer

    By Janet Soderberg. Divine Creator, Spirit in All Things, Your kingdom is Here, and Now. Your creativity is manifest everywhere I look on this heavenly Earth. Nourish us Body and Soul in this earthly Paradise. Forgive us for not noticing, for overlooking, the tiny, the subtle, The…

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  • Photo of Andy Burt

    Down to Earth: Interview with Quaker Filmmaker Andy Burt

    “I didn’t set out to make a film,” says Andy Burt, the creator and director of the new documentary film, Down to Earth: Climate Justice Stories. “I set out to go collect stories.  It was young friends who said ‘you should do a video.’ So that’s why you have…

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  • Man holding sign outside of Chase bank

    One Dollar at a Time: Defunding DAPL

    By Jeff Kisling. IN INDIANAPOLIS we have been working on defunding the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) for several months. On November 15, 2016, a crowd of about 200 of us alongside Native Americans in traditional dress marched through downtown Indianapolis with our signs about defunding the pipeline. We stopped in…

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  • Rainbow in green field with blue sky

    Journey to the End

    By J.T. Dorr-Bremme. IN JULY 2009, I had things pretty well figured out. I had, after six years of on-and-off study, achieved a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing. I had been hired into a new-graduate program, an increasingly rare opportunity in the post-financial-crisis economy, at a nearby hospital. I…

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  • Advice for These Times

    By Shelley Tanenbaum. TWO OF MY RECENT READS have made a strong impression on me as I ponder how I as an individual and how Quaker Earthcare Witness as an organization can best use our resources in these times. Van Jones succinctly sums up the two opposing world views we…

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  • Map of Indivisible Local Action Groups

    Shock and Awe: Climate Action

    By Bob McGahey. FROM MY PERSPECTIVE as a climate journalist and activist, the ascension of an outright climate denialist as the President, with cabinet choices of a half-dozen more, completes the campaign of disinformation mounted by the fossil fuel industry, aided and abetted by virtually the entire Republican Party. The…

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  • Photo by American Public Power Association on Unsplash

    Solar Soars as Costs Plummet

    By Shelley Tanenbaum. AMIDST THE 2016 END-OF-YEAR bad news all around, you might have missed this: utility-scale solar is now the least expensive way to install new sources of electricity. Onshore wind is a close second. Currently, solar and wind are at just about the same capital cost for installation,…

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  • Group of people listening to talk

    A Field Secretary for Earthcare

    By Brad Stocker, Miami Friends Meeting. FOUR YEARS AGO, the Southeastern Yearly Meeting (SEYM) Earthcare Committee (EcC) brought forth a Minute on Climate Change that was approved the 14th day of the fourth month, 2014, which reads in part: “We, the Friends of Southeastern Yearly Meeting, bring this minute forward…

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  • Book Review: “The Hidden Life of Trees: What They Feel, How They Communicate”

    By Tom Small. PETER WOHLLEBEN TELLS THE STORY of a professional forester’s awakening from calculations of board feet to realization of a forest as an intelligent, feeling community. Sharing information and resources through what Wohlleben calls the “wood wide web,” the forest community cooperates so as to ensure that “each…

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  • Photo of Berta Caceres

    Bringing Light to the Dark: Environmental Violence

    By Brad Stocker, Miami Friends Meeting. ONE OF THE MORE POIGNANT things to have affected my earthcare work was 2016’s QEW table and display, which had a darker element than in the past as it focused attention on those who have been killed for their involvement in environmental justice. We…

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  • Hundreds of people with red sign that says "Defend the Sacred"

    Reflections on Standing Rock

    Sacred Stone, Clean Water, Gathering People By Shelley Tanenbaum, QEW General Secretary. The gathering at Standing Rock, with more than 280 indigenous tribes represented, is historic and has been an inspiration to all of us. The ongoing gathering is being held to block construction of the Dakota pipeline that threatens…

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  • Bright green spring flower about to blossom with dew

    Live in Possibility: A Voluntary Carbon Tax

    By Alan Eccleston, Mount Toby Friends Meeting. In meeting for worship four years ago I was meditating on climate change and what I was called to do about it. Words rose up, “I live in possibility,” which I attribute to Emily Dickinson. I had a deep realization this is a…

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  • Photo of light shining in forest

    Reflections on Translating the Resistance in Brazil

    By Meg Kidd. Recognition by QEW of the re-emergent sense of the Divine in light of the resistance at Standing Rock continues to breathe air into the indigenous struggle to share millennial wisdom of peoples throughout the world. Noted on October 3 is this struggle from Standing Rock to Bagua…

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  • Photo of Solar Array above parking lot

    Quakers’ Solar Canopy

    By Don Vessey, San Diego Friends Meeting. America is fast realizing the importance of solar energy. Switching to solar power is not only an environmental necessity, but it makes financial sense as well. It reduces global warming not only by reducing the use of fossil fuels, but potentially in other…

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  • Alaskans Demand Climate Justice and Clean Energy

    Fairbanks Climate Action Coalition’s Next Step

    By Cathy Walling, Chena Ridge Friends Meeting, Fairbanks, AK. “I love to feel where words come from.”  I have long loved that quote from our Quaker heritage story of the indigenous man Papunehang hearing John Woolman preaching. He didn’t know what Woolman was saying, but he knew it was coming…

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  • Ecological Guidance and the Sense of the Divine

    By Keith Helmuth. The fate of the human now hangs on our engagement with ecological guidance; the task Thomas Berry calls “the Great Work.” The sense of guidance provided by the ecological worldview is not unlike a new revelation, perhaps even a new sense of the Divine. We may not…

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  • Reverence and Right Action

    By David Jaber I was not raised Quaker, but instead came to Quakerism after having developed an environmental conscience that has very much shaped my life and how I spend my time. You might take that as one indicator of the compatibility of deep earth ethics with Quaker practice. Let’s…

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  • Light Pink Dahlia

    What’s Emerging?

    By Sara Wolcott. What is it that Quakerism contributes to my ecological journey? I am vexed by this question. Five years ago, when my primary sense of religious belonging was nestled deep within the Religious Society of Friends, it would have been easy for me to answer. My confidence that…

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  • Cogs on Blue Background

    A Blueprint for Climate Action

    By Paul Klinkman Friends are encouraged to expand their carbon handprint.  Increasing Friends’ involvement can have considerably more impact on the world’s climate than if they simply shrink their carbon footprint.  I see Friends acting in four somewhat distinct directions: Personal and corporate witness:  Abolitionists wouldn’t own slaves and wouldn’t…

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  • Our Birthright: The Night Sky

    By Shelley Tanenbaum. I’m not one to believe that the universe owes me (or anyone) anything.  But, after spending five nights camping in semi-remote places between Denver and San Francisco, seeing what appeared to be an infinite number of stars and the Milky Way every night, I am moved to…

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  • Six cows

    Friendly Farmers & Earthcare

    By Suzanne Lamborn, Little Britain Monthly Meeting, Baltimore Yearly Meeting My husband and I can trace our roots for each generation from the beginning of the colonies in agriculture. Being farmers we were aware that our nation went from over 90 percent farming to the present 1 percent owning farms…

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  • Picture of Peace Pole

    What I Did with My Summer Vacation

    By Katherine Murray. The last week of June, I took four days off with the intention of enjoying a quiet “staycation” full of gardening, hummingbirds, and long walks with my dogs. I envisioned this break as a time of silent retreat, with plenty of room for relaxing into the quiet…

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  • QEW Poetry and Prayer

    Eternal Journey: A Poem

    By Chris Roe As the crimson flame of life Breaks slowly Above the horizon, The white, frosted meadows, With trees and hedgerows Of sculptured ice, Speak loudly Of your presence. Once more Upon this journey, As another day begins, Without…

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  • Long highway in marsh

    Young Faith Leaders Rising During GreenFaith Convergence in New Orleans

    By Sara Wolcott. Myself and the other 60 young (aged 20-35) faith leaders from across Canada and the United States who were partaking in GreenFaith’s 2016 North American Convergence eagerly peered out of our bus windows as it turned onto the road leading to Isle de Jean Charles, Louisiana. We…

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  • People on stage

    Reckoning the “Other”

    By Shelley Tanenbaum. Two dynamic and challenging speakers stood out for me at the 2016 Friends General Conference (FGC) gathering in St. Joseph, Minnesota this July. Nekima Levy-Pounds, law professor and leader of the Black Lives Matter movement, came to us after sitting-in at the Governor’s mansion in the immediate…

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  • Florida from Space

    Later Will Be Too Late / Plus Tard Ce Sera Trop Tard*

    By Shelley Tanenbaum. In December 2015 world leaders committed their countries to significantly change the ways that they are contributing to global climate change, they agreed to share resources to support countries most vulnerable and most in need, and they pledged to increase their commitment every five years. However, the…

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  • Group of cheering people in suits

    Youth and a Landmark Climate Case in Court

    By Shelley Tanenbaum, QEW General Secretary. How often do you hear people complain (or rant, scream, and shout) that the U.S. government is not doing enough about climate change, but they don’t actually do anything about it? Last year, twenty-one young Americans and their famous scientist partner joined together to…

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  • Tree in Altiplano Bolivia

    Mini-Grants in Bolivia and Nicaragua

    Mini Grants in Bolivia By Mary Gilbert   TREES IN THE ALTIPLANO The city of El Alto in Bolivia sits at an elevation of 13,600 feet. Specific native trees can actually grow at that altitude in Bolivia. Ruben Hilare—inspired by what he learned at a UN meeting in Cancun that…

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